By Benjamin Flowers
The Belize Police Department will expand its patrol presence in various districts, with the delivery of 10 new patrol vehicles by the Government of Belize.
Minister of National Security John Saldivar handed over the vehicles to Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie on Wednesday at Police Headquarters in Belmopan.
The vehicles, 10 Great Wall pickup trucks, will be distributed to the formations in Belize City, Ladyville, Belmopan, Dangriga, San Ignacio, the Intermediate Southern Formation (Independence Village) and the Special Patrol Unit in Belmopan.
The Ministry of Finance purchased the vehicles at a cost of BZ $280,000.
During the reading of the National Budget earlier this year, Prime Minister Dean Barrow said government would give more priority to both national and citizen security.
Since that declaration, the Police Force has seen numerous advances including: more personnel with the graduation of squad #91 in May; more training, including an initiative in collaboration with the Central American Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) to give continued professional development to new police recruits, and more equipment.
The police have also improved the effectiveness of their operations by opening a new crime pattern analysis unit, which monitors crime occurrences and statistics for commonalities and also gathers intelligence for police operations.